In response to the daily prompt word:Amble
Badger appeared slowly from his set. Sniffing the fresh morning air he had a rather pleasant and leisurely scratch and considered the day ahead.
“Worms might be a good start to the day” he mumbled to himself “or maybe some bugs” he continued “i do rather like bugs.”
As badger decided on whether it would be juicy worms or crunchy bugs there came a familiar voice from the nearby bushes. “Are you taking to yourself again my old friend?”
Badger knew that voice only too well. It was fox, and if fox was about this early it could only mean trouble.
“What do you want fox?” Badger asked impatiently, his black and white stripes bristling. “I was just going to go and have some breakfast.”
“Oh my good badger, no need for such grumpiness” said fox grinning, “it is such a lovely day and that is no way to greet an old friend.”
Badger gave a low growl. “You are no friend of mine Fox” he said rearign up to his full height “either speak your mind or hold your tongue for I am hungry and wish to have my breakfast.”
Badger had long claws and a short temper when he was hungry, and fox knew too well what happened when you crossed a hungry badger.
“i have a proposition for you” Fox said smiling, “and it is one that you surely will enjoy”
“And what exactly might that be” Badger asked.
“Well you see” Fox continued “I know a place where you will find the juiciest worms.”
“Hmm” said badger. “i do rather like worms.”
Smiling, Fox continued “all I ask is that you do a little digging for me, and in return you will have the most plump and juicy worms.”
Badger thought for a while. He did enjoy digging, and he especially enjoyed plump and juicy worms. “is it far?” he asked.
“Oh no no” Fox replied. “Not far at all. In fact it is just over the brow of the hill and beyond the large oak tree.”
“That is not far at all” Badger replied. “And I am yet to have my breakfast.”
“Perfect, just perfect” exclaimed Fox his bushy red tail swishing. “How about we set off now then?”
With tummy grumbling badger followed Fox up the hill through the long green grass and over the brow and further on past he old oak tree.
After a short while the pair reached a small mound between two great sycamore trees which was covered in meadow flowers. “Now Badger” Fox said, his eyed wide, If you would just be so kind as to dig through this mound here you will not only be doing me a huge favour but I believe that you will find some of the most plump and juicy worms in the wood.”
“I will?” Badger asked warily “And how do I know you aren’t lying Fox?”
“Oh my good fellow” Fox replied “I have it on very good authority I assure you.”
Badger’s tummy rumbled. “And why exactly am I digging?” he asked.
“It’s a new den for my family” Fox replied “but I have an ache in my paw and find it very hard to dig you see.”
It sounded reasonable badger thought, and with his tummy rumbling he began to dig.
Now badgers are very good at digging, much better than foxes – especially foxes with achy paws and it was not long until Badger had managed to uncover rather a lot of juicy worms, just as fox had promised. As he chewed a particularly fat and juicy worm he asked fox “is this deep enough?”
“Just a little more” Fox replied.
Badger ate a little more and then dug a little more. “How about now?”
“Just a little more still ” Fox replied.
“This is rather deep for a fox den” badger remarked slurping up an especially long and wriggly worm.
“it will keep us warm in the winter” Fox replied, his tail swishing back and forth in the morning sun. “okay, stop!” he shouted excitedly “That is just perfect.”
Nibbling on more worms in the freshly dug soil Badger backed slowly out of the hole.
“Splendid job, quite splendid” Fox exclaimed. “i could surely never have dug so deep.”
“Is that it then?” Badger asked. “All finished?”
“Oh indeed yes” Fox replied smiling. “I can do the last bit of digging myself”
Badger turned and began to wander off. “Thanks for the worms Fox” he shouted back.
Fox didn’t reply, he had already headed down his freshly dug hole and Badger could hear him digging furiously.
Badger ambled slowly back in the direction of the old oak tree, the warm sun spilling through the canopy of the wood in warm pools.
“Good morning Rabbit” said Badger as rabbit raound the old gnarled tree.”
“Goood day Badger” she said hurriedly “Cant stop, can’t stop for I have left my babies alone in the between the two great sycamores!”
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Photo courtesy of tpsdave@pixabay